The Saw Doctors, Billy Brag and The Undertones Bring it At Castlefield Bowl for Sounds Of The City, Manchester, UK on 6th July 2024





The Saw Doctors notch up their second consecutive headline slot at Manchester’s Sounds of the City July 6th, 2024.

Having headlined a SOTC show on the 1st July 2023 the band are back tonight for round 2, bringing their Irish folk rock to the Castlefield Bowl along with support from The Undertones and Billy Bragg.

In a week that has marked a considerable change in the UK, it seems fitting that the stage tonight will be filled by punk pioneers and activists. First on stage this evening are Northern Irish rockers, The Undertones. Commenting on what a night to be on stage, referencing the England, Switzerland Euros game that is currently underway. They bring a set of high energy with Paul McLoone pogoing on stage as the band play through their back catalogue of 45 years with hits like ‘Teenage Kicks’. As the band leave stage everyone’s attention immediately turns to the ongoing England game which is well into extra time and subsequently goes to penalties.



Almost as if it was planned, Billy Bragg walks onto the stage 5 minutes after England secure the win to progress to the semis, immediately asking if everyone’s ok then asking, no really are you all ok, what a way to start a gig.

Working his way through the set, Bragg gives insight into some songs as he plays them, talking though him co-writing ‘Sexuality’ with long-time friend and Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr. Another song he collaborated with Marr on is ‘The Boy Done Good’ and Bragg mentions ‘we will get this one out of the way’, based on its heavy reference to football. He also shares its nod to Man City (Marrs team) with the line ‘The sky is still blue, and tomorrow is another day’.

Bragg’s political stance is well documented, from the music he writes, his affiliation with Labour and his previous connections with Red Wedge, as its original founder. And its not long before he references Thursday’s Labour landslide victory. Praising the crowd for their input in turning all Greater Manchester Red, where it had previously been blue across some constituencies. Moving through the set Bragg concludes his evening with the classic ‘A New England’ leaving the crowd ready for the rest of the show.



Now its time for what everyone has been waiting for. As The Saw Doctors make their way onto the stage, the volume lifts into rapturous cheers. Starting of the evening with ‘Exhailing Sadness’ Leo Moran then referenced their 2023 hedline slot on the same stage before moving onto ‘Back to Tuam’ and ‘Tommy K’, with the front row bouncing and spilling their beer as the songs progress. With the band working their way through 38 years of songs, a lot of which have had chart success in their their Home country of Ireland. like ‘Red Cortina’ and ‘Never Mind The Strangers’, The crowd appear to be having a great night as another fan favourate ‘N17’ brought an end the first stage of the evening. The wait is shhort lived before the band are back out for the encore, concluding their set with their 1991 No.1 hit ssingle ‘Hay Wrap’.




1. Exhilarating Sadness

2. Back to Tuam

3. Tommy K

4. I Useta Lover

5. Man in the Moon

6. To Win Just Once

7. Galway and Mayo

8. Rock N Roll

9. Red Cortina

10. Green and Red of Mayo

11. Sing a Powerful Song

12. Awanderin’

13. Sound Sham

14. Clare Island

15. I’ll Be On My Way

16. Never Mind the Strangers

17. N17


18. Joyce Country Ceili Band

19. That’s What She Said Last Night

20. Hay Wrap